*Sigh* We're back in Pittsburgh again and while hubby is hard at work and I bask in the joys of unemployment, I had to make sure I updated everyone on the amazing and beautiful weekend we had in Chuck's hometown of Wilmington, Ohio.
I met Chuck at work Thursday evening and after a long drive, we arrived to his parent's house, shared a few drinks with Chuck's brother and sister-in-law and chatted the night away. Friday morning I arose with plans to get lots accomplished! My first stop was the Beauty Bar Salon where I'm getting my wedding hair done. I was able to put down a deposit to secure my appointment and talk to my stylist Lorin. She's so sweet and I'm so excited to have a fun-filled day of pampering and grooming with all my bridesmaids and my Mommy the day of my wedding!
Chuck spent much of the afternoon helping the Stuckerts' good friends and neighbors pack up their moving truck and I entertained myself walking around Wilmington and running errands with his Mom. In the evening, I met up with my good friend, Rachel at Peppermint Patti's, a local, retro ice cream joint. Let me tell you- the Turtle Sundae was amazing.
When I returned home, Chuck's best friend showed up and we all enjoyed a wonderful dinner of brats, sauerkraut and gluten-free pasta salad. I let Chuck and Nic have their "bro time" and went to bed fairly early after some good mother-in-law/daughter-in-law conversation so I'd be sure to have lots of energy the following night.
Saturday turned out to be one of the best days I've had in a long time and reminded me of why I miss Ohio so much. We started our morning off at the Clinton County Farmer's Market where I got myself some potatoes, kale, honey and the biggest cabbage I've ever seen!
|Seriously! The size of this cabbage is insane!|
After the market, we hit up all our local (new and old) favorite spots:
The General Denver (future site of our reception!) for brunch, South Street Coffee House for, well, coffee, and the newly opened The Crave Candy & Nuts for chocolate!
These places are the reason I've grown to love Wilmington as much as I have. There exists such a support for local businesses and each purchase we make there means something. I love supporting the dreams and visions of the people in the community with every dollar I spend.
After our Buy Local extravaganza, we drove out to Branstrator Farm and walked around the grounds a little, visualizing our wedding ceremony. We're so grateful for our friend, Jon who is allowing us to celebrate our union on his beautiful, sprawling estate. I'm so mad at myself for not taking any pictures, but trust me when I say, the pond, the peach orchard and the rows of asparagus, berry, tomato and tons of other plants make for such a picturesque scene. I cannot wait to say my vows in the midst of such natural beauty.
Photo credit: Dale Guindon
Photo credit: Byrd Photograpy (our wedding photographer!)
|Our friend, Jon Branstrator, standing among his blossoms|
Photo credit: Byrd Photography
Later that evening, after another great cookout at the Stuckert home with family, we made our way back to the General Denver for the last performance of one of our favorite local bands, Ugly Brown Coat. Our Pastor, Noah, and his family are leaving for Memphis this week to begin their next adventure in establishing a food & faith centered organization in TN. To say they will be missed is an incredible understatement, and we're so blessed that they plan to make their return to Ohio to be there for our wedding. Noah's last performance was incredibly bittersweet, as was his last sermon the following morning, but it was a beautiful send-off. It was harder that I imagined saying good-bye to such an inspiring man, and friend, but I'm so eager to see the lives they touch in Memphis and I already told Noah, I plan to intern with him in the near future, whether he likes it or not!
|Noah (on right) during his last performance with Ugly Brown Coat.|
Photo credit: Annen Stuckert
After an amazing Saturday night, spent with tons of friends (and future family!), we spent Sunday at Church, I shared a long overdue lunch date with one of my best friends, Karay and we departed once again for Home Sweet Pittsburgh.